Massachusetts system to convert abandoned nursing home into hospital

Worcester-based UMass Memorial Health plans to convert a former nursing home into a 72-bed hospital building for high acuity patients, the Worcester Telegram & Gazette reported Jan. 3.

The hospital administration submitted an application to the planning board for a definitive site plan for the property. The site currently consists of a 78,054-square-foot six-story building with 88 parking spaces and two loading docks. The application said the hospital intends to convert the property into an inpatient acute-care facility and proposed building a 14,556-square-foot addition.

UMass Memorial purchased the property — which was formerly the Beaumont Rehabilitation and Skilled Nursing Center owned by Salmon Health and Retirement — in 2021. In 2020, the nursing home came under scrutiny when residents were removed from the building to make room for recovering COVID-19 patients, according to the report.

"UMass Memorial Health has undertaken several successful initiatives to reduce capacity constraints and critical bed shortages across our system, which continue to disproportionately impact the Central Massachusetts region and its sickest patients," Justin Precourt, DPN, interim president and chief nursing officer at UMass Memorial Medical Center, told Becker's. "Our plan to convert the former Beaumont Rehabilitation and Skilled Nursing Center into a 72-bed hospital building is intended to further ease the strain on the UMass Memorial system, while helping our caregivers continue to deliver world class care. This proposed building will include services such as imaging, cardiac diagnostics, dialysis, and therapies, as well as innovative digital tools to optimize the patient and caregiver experience.  We look forward to working with the city of Worcester, the state, and our community throughout this process."

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